Milwaukee Brewers: Should they add an outfielder before the deadline?

Matthew Dewoskin
MILWAUKEE, WI - MAY 04: Domingo Santana #16 of the Milwaukee Brewers hits a home run in the sixth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Miller Park on May 4, 2018 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WI - MAY 04: Domingo Santana #16 of the Milwaukee Brewers hits a home run in the sixth inning against the Pittsburgh Pirates at Miller Park on May 4, 2018 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /
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The Milwaukee Brewers have three outfielders on their active roster right now. Could they look to add to their outfield with a deadline deal?

The Milwaukee Brewers demoted Domingo Santana and called up Brad Miller on Saturday morning. While, Miller will add depth to the infield, the Brewers outfield is looking thin. Lorenzo Cain, Christian Yelich, and Ryan Braun are the everyday starters. Eric Thames is capable of handling a corner outfield spot in a pinch, and Hernan Perez can play just about anywhere. After that, they really don’t have many options if someone needs a day off.

Unless Santana rediscovers himself quickly, the Milwaukee Brewers may need to add an outfielder before the July trade deadline.

How bad was Santana?

Bad enough to get sent back to Triple-A.

Santana owns a .249/.313/.354 slash line in 211 plate appearances this year. He’s actually posted a .292/.350/.417 line against righties, but his .111/.196/.156 slash line against lefties is among the worst in the league.

The good news is that Santana hasn’t even turned 26 years old and he already has 30-homer season under his belt. He’ll rework his swing away from Milwaukee and return to the Major League roster the next time they need another outfielder.

Do they have anyone else in the Minors?

Keon Broxton and Brett Phillips are also at Colorado Springs and should get a call at some point this year.

Broxton has a .268/.340/.432 slash line in 68 games at Triple-A. He’s stolen 23 bases, but he also has a 36.8% strikeout rate. He’s still the same guy he was last year.

Phillips has a .245/.344/.404 slash line in 53 games at Triple-A. He did have a ‘blink-and-you-missed-it’ call up earlier in the season. He only managed 14 plate appearances in nine games, and didn’t do much with it.

Broxton and Phillips are a phone call away, and the Milwaukee Brewers are much more likely to look internally before making a deal.

Should they add through the trade market?

If the Milwaukee Brewers want to add a battle-tested veteran for the stretch run, they’ll have to look at the trade market. Santana, Broxton, and Phillips have the skills to earn a Major League roster spot, but they have zero playoff experience. If the Brewers want to add a ‘been-there-done-that’ guy, they could look to make a deal.

Carlos Gomez is currently with the Tampa Bay Rays, and he’s a free agent at the end of the 2018 season. He’s appeared in the post season three times, including an extended run with the Texas Rangers in 2015. He’s not doing much with the Rays, but he’s very much available and can come off the bench.

Other names the Milwaukee Brewers may want to consider are Hunter Pence, Carlos Gonzalez, and Colby Rasmus.

Next: Could the Brewers make a deadline deal with the Padres?

The Milwaukee Brewers have outfield depth, but it’s not at the Major League level. Their starters are one of the best units available, but two of their three starters have already spent time on the DL. They have three guys who are a phone call away, but they may consider adding a bat for the stretch run. Most free agent outfielders to be are available for the deadline equivalent of a bag of balls. Bringing on a veteran outfielder could pay dividends down the line, and won’t impact the long term plan.

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